Turtle time continues today with a look at Donatello from Playmates’ new Nickelodeon series. Today’s feature should go a lot quicker than yesterday’s, since we’ve already hit most of the basic points and can focus on the differences. Let’s dive right in…
The packaging is basically the same, but there’s plenty to distinguish Don’s card from Leo’s. Besides the individualized insert that identifies Don as the “Inventor and Weaponeer” of the turtle team, the back of the card has the File Card that can be clipped out and saved, just like the good old days. God, look at that terrible portrait of Don from the new series. May I take this opportunity to once again state I’m giving this show a pass? It’s amazing how much better the figure looks. Once again, Playmates, you clearly put a lot of love and attention to this packaging and it shows.
At first glance the body may look like a reuse from Leo’s, but the similarities are only in the broad strokes and these are in fact two mostly unique sculpts. Check out the dents, dings, and scrapes on Don’s shell, knee and elbow guards and you’ll see they’re all different. The wrist and foot wraps are the same basic sculpts, but the finger and foot wraps are differently colored. Don’s belt and shoulder strap are also different, plus Don has a little loop in the back of his belt, which can be used to store his bowstaff. You do still get that same great leathery texture to the skin. Naturally, the head is brand new, giving Don a slightly more stoic and less toothy mouth. Once again, the coloring on the figure is excellent, using a lot of colored plastic over paint, and you’ll notice that Don features a different skin color. All in all, he looks great.
Donatello’s accessories include his trademark bowstaff and a sprue tree containing his “Ninja Arsenal” which can be clipped out. The bowstaff and the sprue are all cast in brown plastic, which works just fine for me, because they aren’t in neon orange or purple or other colors Playmates has traditionally and incomprehensibly used for accessories in the past. The bowstaff is simple enough, but still sculpted well and Don can hold it in either or both hands.
About the only thing that is identical between Don and Leo is the articulation. You get a ball joint in the neck, arms that feature ball joints in the shoulders, hinges at the elbows, and swivels in the elbows and wrists. The legs feature hinge and swivel hips and knees. Once again, the articulation is certainly serviceable for a figure of this size and build.
Don turned out every bit as good as Leo. He’s distinctive right down to the tiny little details, and feels just as high quality and lovingly constructed. I’m going to go with liking the Leo figure a bit more, just because I dig Leo’s swords and scabbards more than Don’s simple bowstaff, but there’s no doubt that Playmates is now two for two on this new line of Turtles. Tomorrow we’ll look at Raphael and see if they can go three for three. And here’s a hint… yes, they can!